A Few of My Favorite Things (NYE edition)


It’s been a while since I’ve done a weekly post, so I figured the new year is a great time to bring it on back. Last week was mostly filled with more Christmas festivities in Nashville (see my previous post), but we got back in town just in time for New Year’s Eve. My mom graciously agreed to spend the night at our house to keep Leighton so we could spend the evening with some friends at their new house. It was a much-needed break and the perfect way to ring in the new year!

[noon year’s eve with LL]img_7951

[my favorite pb&j face]



[party hats, blowers, champagne, and blondes]

[our youngest and cutest partier]


[our fabulous hosts]

[starting 2017 with some fabulous friends and hats]

A Few of My Favorite Things (153)

[hanging with Craig’s family]

[weekday pool time]

[her new favorite toy]

[stuffed shells bolognese]

[Friday play date]

[every dinner date should require B.W.D.]

[Decatur Square]

[Craig’s most recent project]

[our resident comedian]

[homemade donut ice cream sammies]

What a busy week! Craig’s family came to visit for a couple days after his sister’s tournament in Chattanooga, and we spent our time visiting, eating Craig’s delicious smoked pork shoulder, playing with Coco and Leighton, and getting some pool time. Leighton and I went to our weekly music class, which she seems to enjoy and get more out of with every week. It was so funny watching her roll around on the new, plush carpet in the music room this week – haha!

Friday was a day of two dates for us — a playdate with our friends at their Avondale Estates neighborhood pool, and a dinner date with my favorite guy. We love The Iberian Pig in downtown Decatur, but we haven’t been back in a few years. I earned a gift card from using Opentable.com for so long, so this was the perfect opportunity to use it. The bacon wrapped dates, charcuterie and cheese selection, pork cheek tacos, and everything else we had were even better than we remembered.

Aside from fun, we also managed to spend a decent amount of the weekend working. I had a photo session for one of my sweet little newborn clients who just turned 6 months, and Craig finished up re-doing much of our deck. He has been working tirelessly on it whenever he has free time, and it looks so great! It’s much more sturdy to hold up to our crazy Coco, who likes to jump on the railings and bark at things, and it looks better, too. And if that weren’t enough, he spent the entire day Sunday helping a friend re-build HIS deck! Good, good man.

Hope y’all have a nice week!

A Few of My Favorite Things (152)

[Stella & Dot outfit of the week:: Engravable Bar Necklace // Rebel Pendant // Gilded Path Double Wrap Bracelet // Express top // Old Navy skinny jeans // Sam Edelman sandals from DSW]

[food truck Tuesdays]

[girls night]

[Chihuly in the Garden]

[best friends share everything]

[park playtime]

[cocktails at The Luminary]

[ready for summer]

[baby’s 1st pool day]

[red white and cute]

[neighborhood MemDay party]

[family cookout]

What a busy, fun week and long weekend! Tuesday night was spent at one of our favorite local parks for food trucks with some friends and their little lady. Craig spent most of the evening in line for some AMAZING biscuit sandwiches, but Leighton and Molly had fun rolling around and trying to steal each others’ toys/food/cups.  I got a girls night out on Wednesday with some of my favorite ladies, which was a highlight of my week! We had dinner at Gio’s Chicken (I’m a huge fan of their chicken parm) and of course had to pick up gelato at his place across the street. To continue our fun week, mom and I took LL with us to see Chihuly in the Garden at the Atlanta Botanical Garden. Such amazing colors, shapes, and beautiful glass work mixed in with the impressive gardens. It’s up through October, and I highly recommend it!

We stayed in town over the holiday weekend, and it was a busy but also relaxing few days (except for Craig, who spent many hours pressure washing and re-staining our fence in the hot summer sun). My mom babysat for us on Friday night so we could have a double date with one of my very first friends from college and her boyfriend, who Craig just loves (it’s the best when that happens!). Leighton got to experience her first pool day, and I think she loved it. We spent a couple hours hanging in the pool with some of our friends and their littles and then had a cookout and LL stayed up way past her bedtime (#partyanimal). Our neighborhood hosted a Memorial Day potluck party in the cul-de-sac, which was lots of fun. We got to meet several new(ish) neighbors, and it was fun hanging out with friends, letting the kids play (as much as babies can do so), and eating yummy food together. To round out a great weekend, we headed over to my parents’ house in Marietta for a cookout feast of BBQ wings and ribs, corn on the cob, cake, and homemade peach ice cream. It was a beautiful night, and we were thoroughly entertained by baby’s antics at the dinner table.

I was able to squeeze in a couple photo sessions as well — yay for work that truly makes me happy! It was a pretty perfect several days spent together and with so many people we love. Thank you again to those who serve and sacrifice for our country so that we can enjoy these freedoms every day. I’m grateful for the land of the free because of the brave.

A Few of My Favorite Things (151)

[weekly baby style:: Carter’s outfit // Nordstrom headband // Old Navy jelly sandals]IMG_0518

[newest donut obsession]

[big girl things]

[twinning with my baby bear]

[perfect day for a GA wedding]

[celebrating Mr. & Mrs. Scott]

[baby’s first taste of summer]

[Leighton’s first tooth!]

Another great week is in the books. We had a fun lunch date with my mom up in Marietta early in the week. We had sandwiches out on the patio at Canvas (a new spot for us), and the best part was their doughnut shop below the restaurant! Afterward, we strolled down some streets near the Square and admired historic homes that we’d love to buy when we win the lottery. 😉 Marietta has some really beautiful historic homes surrounding the downtown area. 

On Friday, we took advantage of another day of gorgeous weather and walked at Piedmont Park with my mom. The start of the weekend called for a little family date at Zama, a new, nicer Mexican place that opened up nearby. We had delicious ritas, and the live music covered up any noise made by LL, who had decided to boycott her nap that afternoon. 

We hit up the Peachtree Road Farmers Market Saturday morning and picked up some different meats for next week’s dinners, had treats from The Little Tart Bakeshop and wood fired pizza from our friends at S&J’s Pizza, and also got a meal from Garnish and Gather (like a local Plated or Blue Apron service) to cook this week. The recipe includes popcorn to crust the chicken with, so I’m intrigued!

One of my college friends got married Saturday down in Newnan, GA, and it was the most perfect day for a wedding! The ceremony was in her parents’ backyard overlooking the lake, and the reception took place at a really neat barn/event space on a beautiful piece of property. It was a lovely way to kick off wedding season! 

We rounded out the weekend with a cookout at my parents’ house, and I think Craig is still full. 😉 Grilled sausage, burgers and dogs, piping hot French fries,  slaw, ice cold watermelon, and homemade ice cream and cheesecake bars… it’s safe to say that no one left hungry. Leighton entertained us with her food-eating antics, and she LOVED trying a huge slice of watermelon for the first time. I think it helped her little gums, because she cut her first TWO teeth this weekend!!  We didn’t even know the first one (bottom front) had come in until my mom saw it while babysitting her Saturday night. The second one came in next to it the very next day. Our baby is growing up before our eyes! 

A Few of My Favorite Things (150)

[Stella & Dot outfit of the week:: Eden Fringe Necklace // Gap tshirt // Target shorts]

[Monday happy hour(s)]

[baby fashion — catmermaid style!]

[reunion before the reunion]

[4 generations]

[15yr reunion]

[lunch dates]

It’s always a good thing when the week kicks off with a girls dinner – especially when it includes outdoor dining, margaritas, and good Mexican food! My college dorm girlfriends (who live nearby) and I try to meet up for dinner monthly, which is something I always look forward to. We spent a few hours talking, and it makes me so happy to have these friendships that have been going strong for almost 15 years!

My mom joined Leighton and me for our weekly music class and took us to lunch afterward, which may have to become a regular activity. 🙂 We jumped around, banged on instruments, and sang with our little bug. It was fun to include Grandma this time!

We continued the month of travel with a long weekend trip up to Nashville for Craig’s 15yr high school reunion, and we had such a great time! I love going to visit Craig’s hometown of Franklin and seeing his family and our many friends who live there and in Nashville. Since I’m not working full time and Craig’s work schedule allows for some more flexibility, we now typically go up to visit for 3 nights, which makes such a difference for us!

Friday night, we put L to bed and went into Nashville to hang out with some of our buddies. #momanddadsnightout We had a yummy pizza dinner with live music at Donato’s with one of our besties Danielle (and her new fiancé!) and met up with some more friends in Midtown for the night. We lost track of time having fun and sort of regretted it the next day when Leighton woke up at 6am, but it was worth it!

We got in lots of visits this time, including a delicious homemade lunch with Craig’s grandparents (chicken salad and croissants – yum!!), a trip to see some good family friends who were in town for the weekend, and lunch with my college BFF Charlotte and her boyfriend. We went to Mitchell Deli in East Nashville – great sammies, a Sunday breakfast buffet, and lots of outdoor seating. I recommend if you’re in the area! I begged Craig to stop at the famed Donut Den on our way there, but he denied my request, saying that we didn’t need donuts AND lunch… I say there’s always room for donuts. Amiright?

Craig’s reunion was Saturday night at this neat place in Franklin called The Factory. We stay in touch with several high school friends of his, so it was great to spend more time with them, as well as getting to catch up with some folks he hadn’t seen in years – or since graduating. It’s amazing how, in general, some people don’t seem to change at all, and others are almost unrecognizable after so much time. Also, big thanks to Craig’s family for staying home to make sure Leighton was sleeping safe and sound while we had some much-needed fun with friends!

Nashville is one of our most favorite places to be, and we look forward to making it back up soon!

A Few of My Favorite Things (149)

[Stella & Dot outfit of the week:: Breezeblock Enamel Pendant // Gilded Path Double Wrap Bracelet // Target top // Stitch Fix skinny jeans // Tieks flats]

[Oh Joy – neon!]

[1st St. Patty’s Day]

[Friday fun on the Beltline]

[family photo ready]

[Spring Trunk Show Style]

We had lots of fun last week — lunch and a walk in Piedmont Park with my friend and her little guy, lunch and a walk on the Beltline with my mom (including a stop for King of Pops, of course!), and Leighton’s weekly music class. We also had the main floor of our house painted light grey, so the beige is finally almost completely gone (just the guest bathroom is left)! It’s amazing what a new coat of paint can do to a room — it feels so bright, clean, and fresh now.

Over the weekend, we had our family portraits done, and Leighton surprised us both by being such a good little model, despite boycotting a nap that afternoon. 🙂 I can’t wait to see the finished product! Grandma babysat that night so we could have a night out with friends for March Madness and Mexican food. We finished up the weekend with my Spring Trunk Show, and as you can see above, Leighton was a big helper with showing off the jewels. I’m looking forward to this coming weekend because we’re heading up to Nashville to celebrate Leighton’s first Easter!

A Few of My Favorite Things (148)

[Stella & Dot outfit of the week:: Rebel Pendant // Engravable Bar with Leighton’s birthdate // Gilded Path Double Wrap Bracelet // GAP top and jeans // gold Tieks flats]

[someone turned 6 months this week!]

[secret menu item at Seven Lamps]

[Friday afternoon fun on the Beltline]

[St. Patty’s Day flair]

Another busy week over here… we started with a mini session for Leighton’s 1/2 birthday, Craig started his spring softball season with his buddies, and I had a fun dinner out with some girlfriends at Seven Lamps in Buckhead. On Wednesday, Leighton and I started a fun new weekly activity — music classes! She seemed to love watching the other kids and parents (and chewing on everything in sight), and I had fun singing, dancing and playing instruments with her. Most of the parents in the class said they’d been bringing their kids since they were her age (and those kids are now 2-3 years old), so I’m excited to see how much we’ll enjoy it going forward!

As you probably saw, Leighton turned 6 months old on Thursday! So hard to believe, but I’m incredibly grateful for how incredible the past 6 months have been. We have so much to look forward to as she continues to grow and change! On Friday, she had a healthy check-up at the pediatrician, and we took a 2 mile walk on the Northside Beltline Trail with my mom. It’s hard to not want to be outside all day when the weather is so nice! Craig grilled delicious peach and goat cheese burgers for dinner, and it was so nice to just hang out with a homemade dinner and a nice bottle of wine leftover from my Napa trip.

We spent Saturday afternoon in Midtown watching the annual St. Patty’s parade with various friends. Leighton thoroughly enjoyed hanging out in the Baby Bjorn and watching the parade go by from a 12th floor condo balcony, as well as walking down the street and collecting beads. 🙂 We ended our fun day with dinner at Taqueria del Sol and ice cream at Jeni’s with our friends and their super adorable little guy (aka L’s future husband). It was pretty much a perfect day!

A Few of My Favorite Things (147)

[Stella & Dot outfit of the week:: Engravable Disc with monogram // Sahara Pendant Necklace // Gilded Path Double Wrap Bracelet // JCrew top // Stitchfix jeans // Tieks flats]

[spring decor is taking over]

[master bath is almost done!]

[pre-dinner drink at Bartaco]

[happy 30th to our favorite Lauren!]

[Sunday stroll]

[gelato + flats + floors]

Oh, how I love weekends like the one we just had! My sweet mom babysat Leighton on Friday so we could have a double date with our friends at the best burger place in town, Bocado. We thoroughly enjoyed our night talking about their baby on the way and eating lots of burgers and fries.

Our favorite thing of the week was celebrating our sister-in-law Lauren’s 30th birthday! She is truly the sister I never had, and we love her more with each passing year. She’s the sweetest, most loving aunt to LL, and we had the best time partying with her, my brother, and tons of friends and family on Saturday! Andrew surprised her with a morning yoga class filled with lots of friends, and then he cooked a huge brunch at their house, and we continued the fun all afternoon. Leighton got to meet so many new friends and wanted to eat Lauren’s birthday beads all day. One of the highlights was a collection of videos Andrew got some of her friends to make for her — the best one being a Lego stop-motion re-enactment of Lauren’s famed bicycle crash from childhood. I’m still chuckling thinking about it.

We had a delicious brunch at South City Kitchen with my parents on Sunday, and we took Leigjton on a long walk on the Silver Commet Trail to walk off brunch and enjoy the gorgeous spring-like weather.  We continued Lauren’s birthday celebrations with a family dinner at Novo Cucina in Dunwoody, which is an offshoot of the popular Inman Park restaurants, Fritti and Sotto Sotto. It’s a cool space, and we all raved about the pasta, pizza, arancini, and gelato. They also have a self-serve wine bar… I can’t wait to go back!

It was truly a perfect weekend!

A Few of My Favorite Things (146)

[Stella & Dot outfit of the week:: Lotus Tassel Chandeliers (wear 4 ways!) // Rebel Pendant // Engravable Disc in gold // Sawyer Stone Stretch Bracelet // Christina Link Bracelet // Stitchfix top]

[ladies who lunch]

[chunky thighs and baby tights]


[date night]

[weekend visitors]

We had a great week over here, and it’s hard to believe March is right around the corner. I had a rare week off from photography work, so Leighton and I had a fun lunch date with my mom one day. We ate lunch at one of our favorite spots in Marietta Square, Taqueria Tsunami, and then wandered around the Square for a little bit of shopping. We got the yummiest champagne vinegar that I plan to use on a salad later this week. 

My mom was also kind enough to babysit so we could have a date night on Thursday. We usually like to try new places, but we decided on an old favorite, Seasons 52, from when we loved in Buckhead. I appreciate that they post the calories on every menu item – and they have so many delicious dishes to choose from! I also love their mini desserts and always want to order about half a dozen of them, which obviously defeats the purpose of small portions… And while I love taking L so many places with us, it’s SO nice to get out with just my main squeeze for a few hours (and be able to eat my meal with both hands if needed and not while wrangling a very squirmy 5-month old who wants to reach for everything in sight nowadays). Date nights are the best, and this one was no exception!

We also got a wonderful last minute visit from my oldest and dearest friend and her husband over the weekend! They were traveling for work and made a (slightly out of the way) pit stop in Atlanta to stay with us for a couple days. We were super lazy on Saturday and hung out at the house all day, except for an afternoon cupcake run and dinner out that night. Nicole made us her yummy biscuits and gravy for breakfast one day and we pigged out on Dough in the Box donuts the next morning… so needless to say, we did not go hungry. They also got us hooked on the show Lip Sync Battle, so thanks to them for adding another show to our already-too-long lineup of tv watching. Leighton go so many snuggles from them and got to show off all her fun tricks. I love that although we typically only see each other maybe once or twice a year, she has been so amazing and has made the trip up here twice since Leighton was born to spend quality time with her and us. We had the absolute best time with them talking about their boys, making sweet memories with Leighton, and just enjoying each others’ company in the comfort of our cozy basement. 🙂 

A Few of My Favorite Things (145)

[Friday lunch date]

[sleepy coworker]

[afternoon walks with my girl]

[Swan-shaped dessert]

[bathroom progress]

[Valentine’s fun]

[my funny Valentines]

We’ve had another busy week over here! Our master bathroom renovation is going strong — more than a little delayed, but it’s moving along. The tile work is almost complete, and then we move on to some drywall / electrical / painting work this coming week. The final step is having the glass installed on two sides of the shower — hopefully we don’t have to wait too long for that.

I had a fun girls’ lunch (with one sweet little boy) at Joy Cafe, which has incredibly yummy grilled cheeses and a dessert called Milk and Cookies Pie. I could go there every week if it wouldn’t be so bad for me! We also left Leighton with someone other than my mom for the first time ever. Our neighbor kept her for a few hours so we could go to a nice dinner at Blue Ridge Grill with my parents, and it was so good! On Saturday, I helped celebrate an old  college friend at her wedding shower at the Swan Coach House, a Buckhead staple for ladies’ luncheons. It was so nice to see her and catch up with some other friends over yummy chicken salad, frozen fruit salad, and a dessert that looked like a swan. 🙂

We celebrated Valentine’s a few days early with a most decadent dinner at Marcel, one of our favorite new restaurants in the city. On the actual holiday, we cooked fresh blueberry pancakes for breakfast, gave LL some fun goodies, and made homemade Thai curry chicken soup for dinner (I squeezed in a maternity photo session, too!). We just love our chubby little Valentine so much, and it was the best Vday yet!